Alton Ellis & the Flames – “Dance Crasher” (1966)

August 29, 2008 at 4:56 pm (Jamaican Music, Ska)

Alton Ellis was generally revered as the greatest and most soulful singer the country ever produced – until Bob Marley broke big. Ellis was one of the first singers to enter a Jamaican music business. This is one of his great ska hits from 1966. He also made many great songs during the rocksteady and reggae eras.

NOTE: Please double click on this video in order to get it to play.

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The Skatalites – “Fidel Castro” (1965)

August 18, 2008 at 12:36 pm (Jamaican Music, Ska)

In honor of trumpeter Johnny Moore who died yesterday, this ska classic is dedicated to him. The amazing Skatalites!

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The Wailers – “Simmer Down” (1963)

August 16, 2008 at 1:59 pm (Jamaican Music, Ska)

“Simmer Down” was the First single released by The Wailers (Marley, Tosh & Wailer), accompanied by the ska supergroup, The Skatalites, and produced by famed Jamaican producer Clement “Coxsone” Dodd in 1963. It was the number one hit in Jamaica in February 1964.
The song was aimed at the “rude boys” of the Jamaican ghettos at the time, sending them a message to cool down or “simmer down” with all the violence and crime going on in Kingston.

(Note: I do apologize for the average sound quality. Please keep in mind the primitive recording equipment at the time)

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Prince Buster All Stars – “Al Capone” (1965)

August 16, 2008 at 1:43 pm (Jamaican Music, Ska)

“AlCapone” is another ska classic by Prince Buster & his all-star band. This song was one of the major influences on the Two-Tone ska revival in England in the late 1970s.

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Roland Alphonso & The Skatalites – “Guns of Navarone” (1965)

August 10, 2008 at 5:51 pm (Jamaican Music, Ska)

Saxophonist Roland Alphonso and The Skatalites peforming this ska classic from 1965.

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Prince Buster All Stars – “One Step Beyond” (1964)

August 9, 2008 at 12:45 am (Jamaican Music, Ska)

Another song by the great Prince Buster that was later covered by Madness – this was the title track to their debut album in 1979.

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Prince Buster All Stars – “Madness” (1962)

August 8, 2008 at 7:02 pm (Jamaican Music, Ska)

Early ska classic….this song was later covered by the group Madness (as well as giving the group its name). Prince Buster This is one of the first big ska hits.
Without the man born as Cecil Campbell, the whole 2-Tone ska-revival movement of the late 70s would have never existed.

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